Espreso. Global

Ukrainian icebreaker Noosfera completes third Antarctic season

9 May, 2024 Thursday
20:31

The flagship of the Ukrainian research fleet, the icebreaker Noosfera, has completed the third Antarctic season, which turned out to be the longest and had the largest scientific program

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The National Antarctic Research Center reported the information. 

They noted that late in the evening of May 8, the icebreaker docked in the port of Cape Town, after the end of the third Antarctic season, which began on November 17, 2023. At the beginning of the season, the Noosfera sailed from Cape Town to King George Island, where the Polish Antarctic station Arctowski is located. The next stop of the ship was the Ukrainian Antarctic station Akademik Vernadsky on Galindez Island. The captain of this voyage was Oleksandr Hryshko.

“The icebreaker delivered cargo and expedition participants, including a team of technical specialists, to modernize Vernadsky. Then it arrived in the port of Punta Arenas (Chile),” the statement reads. 

The next trip of the third season took place on March 15. The captain of this voyage was Pavlo Panasiuk. The icebreaker delivered to the Ukrainian station the team of the 29th Ukrainian Antarctic Expedition, cargo for its wintering, as well as seasonal expedition scientists from Ukraine and other countries.

The scientists note that during this part of the expedition, they managed to conduct a lot of research, including:

  • sampling of bottom sediments to continue studying the geological history of the Earth, especially climate change
  • the first sampling of marine fauna from the bottom of the Southern Ocean (in cooperation with Polish colleagues)
  • collecting unique material for the study of acoustic communication of rare southern right whales
  • collecting krill and phytoplankton samples for an important international study on the distribution of silicons in the Antarctic
  • sampling of isolated populations of freshwater invertebrates and vascular plants, as well as rocks from Deception Island and Christine Island, Arthur Bay, that are interesting from the point of view of comparative research.

After that, on April 13, the Noosfera arrived in Chile with the participants of the 28th UAE and seasonal expedition, and then again set sail for the Antarctic for the rotation of polar explorers at the Polish Arctowski station. From there, the icebreaker headed to Cape Town.

The Science Center said that this year's Noosfera expedition, like last year's, was a Ukrainian-Polish one and was partially funded by the Polish Antarctic Program.

“Even in a full-scale war, we not only support but also develop the activities of our scientific flagship. This time we have logistics, international cooperation, and the largest research program. I recall with a smile the words of skeptics about ‘a rusty trough standing in the port.’ Noosfera has worked brilliantly during the third Antarctic season, for which I am grateful to both of its crews,” said Yevhen Dykyi, Director of the National Research Center.

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